June 8, 2011 | By Hanni Fakhoury

EFF Joins Amicus Brief Urging Ohio Supreme Court to Find Warrantless GPS Tracking Unconstitutional

EFF recently joined several legal defense organizations, law professors and others to urge the Ohio Supreme Court to rule that warrantless surveillance of a car with a GPS tracking device violates the Fourth Amendment’s prohibition against unreasonable searches and seizures.

In State v. Johnson, the police planted a GPS tracking device on a van without a search warrant. They proceeded to monitor the van for days, ultimately tracking its movement from Cincinnati to Chicago. The Court of Appeals found that the police didn't violate the Fourth Amendment's guarantee against unreasonable search and seizure because the tracking didn't constitute a "search."

Joining an amicus brief filed by the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), the Ohio Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Center for Democracy and Technology, the First Amendment Lawyers Association, the ACLU of Ohio, the Office of the Ohio Public Defender, and seven law professors, EFF warned the Ohio Supreme Court that such prolonged surveillance and monitoring implicates an individual’s right to privacy. Simply traveling on a public road does not mean law enforcement can know your every move at any time of the day, wherever you go, whether it is to see your lawyer, doctor, priest or lover. Plus, warrantless GPS surveillance allows law enforcement to access private property they wouldn’t be authorized to enter by simply following a car.

NACDL counsel on the brief were Michael Price and Ravert J. Clark, who served as EFF’s local counsel.

Deeplinks Topics

Stay in Touch

NSA Spying

EFF is leading the fight against the NSA's illegal mass surveillance program. Learn more about what the program is, how it works, and what you can do.

Follow EFF

Dear @JerryBrownGov: if you only personally read one item about CalECPA, this should be it: https://eff.org/r.6oqg

Oct 7 @ 9:44am

Teledildonics patent troll backs down from lawsuit against Kickstarter https://eff.org/r.50wk via @joemullin

Oct 7 @ 9:05am

Former NSA chief strongly disagrees with current NSA chief on encryption, Motherboard reports: https://eff.org/r.3kxi

Oct 7 @ 8:50am
JavaScript license information